Your staff is hard-working and diligent—but tensions are high, and sales are lower than expected. Is it your staff? Or could it be the systems in place? If your staff relies on outdated methods of placing orders, it’s likely that restaurant communications are strained, which means your restaurant is operating below its potential.
Your team of employees can only do so much with what they’re given, so you might consider improving their modes of communication. Not only will your employees be more efficient on the job, but they will also appreciate how easy it is to perform well.
Below we examine how improving communication techniques for your staff will enable them to perform better—and accelerate your restaurant’s success.
Update to Mobile POS System
During a busy period, you want to keep your staff from becoming overwhelmed. The benefit of a mobile POS system is the freedom of mobility it gives your serving staff. The speeds they can work at might not be as fast as lightning, but as close as humanly possible. This permits your restaurant—both front and back of the house—to work at the fast pace of consumer spending.
For fast-casual restaurants, opting for a mobile point-of-sale system makes the most sense. The type of diners you receive expect to wait for less, carry less cash, and demand faster service. To meet their fast expectations, you need a fast module. If you have multiple dining areas, an mPOS system is also ideal. If customers are waiting in line for a table, you can take their drink orders as they wait, and even transfer their tab to their table once seated.
For all restaurants, having a mobile POS takes the pressure off your staff. For example, you can store your menu and its details on the module (like a phone, iPad, or tablet), permitting anyone on the floor to answer customer questions.
Above all, the mobile POS systems give servers a chance to breathe. That’s because the moment an order is taken, an order can be placed. By not having to walk to a monitor to place their order, the customer experience is improved:
- The kitchen receives the order at once.
- Servers can attend to another table immediately, without needing to pause an order submission.
- Multiple orders can be taken at once, and items are not forgotten.
- Checks can be cashed out or rung up right there at the table.
- Changes to orders can be made in seconds.
Make the everyday procedures and communications fluid for your staff, and they will be less tense and more organized. Overall, their performance becomes optimized.
Streamline BOH and FOH Communications
Communications between the front of the house and back of the house are notorious for misunderstandings, confusion, and in some restaurants—just being plain awful. The fastest way to boost productivity is by improving communications between the FOH and the kitchen.
Being the face of the business, servers, and hosts are responsible for fielding customer requests and complaints. Meanwhile, the BOH is tasked with responding to orders. Their hands are full of prep work and preparing orders, often in high-stress conditions. More often than they should be, misunderstandings arise because the two houses don’t know what’s happening on the other side.
If the FOH and BOH are working hand in hand, why should their communications be limited? Instead, open the floodgates! As the restaurant owner or manager, it’s your duty to facilitate transparency.
Before modern point-of-sale systems were available, paper ticketing was the best method to relay customers’ orders to the kitchen. But this communication method is rife with accidents, such as:
- Sloppy handwriting that confuses kitchen staff.
- An item is forgotten.
- The wrong information is written out.
- An order slip gets lost.
- There is a lag time between taking an order and handing it to the kitchen.
Assuming there are problems with an order, communications only digress. For instance, the kitchen can’t notify fast enough when a dish is 86’d, or the server doesn’t have time to relay a customer complaint to the chef. After working in restaurants long enough, you know firsthand that messy, lagging communication often results in tense and abrupt working relations between the two.
If you have similar problems at your restaurant, it’s in the business’s benefit to find an alternate mode of communication. Investing in a mobile point-of-sale system is fast and simple to install; it’s the cure to the headaches your employees have been suffering from for mont